Qsymia is a prescription weight loss drug which contains the infamous psychostimulant, Phentermine.
It also contains Topiramate – an anti-convulsive drug – which has been used to treat a variety of health issues, including obesity, epilepsy (hence; anti-convulsive), migraines, alcoholism, PTSD, bipolar disorder and borderline personality disorder.
Qsymia is recommended for people with a BMI (Body Mass Index) of 30 or over. The manufacturers promise the following:
- 24 lbs Weight Loss
- 4 inches Reduction of Waist Measurement
- Almost 10% Average Weight Loss
The drug achieves this by:
a. Suppressing Appetite
b. Increasing Satiety from Food Eaten
The FDA approved this combination of Phentermine and Topiramate in 2012.
Due to the potential for side effects, there are a few stipulations on who may and may not use Qsymia. We will cover those in the Side Effects and Safety section later in this article.
How Does Qsymia Work?
Qsymia is a combination of two prescription-only drugs:
Phentermine is a psychostimulant, which is essentially similar in action to amphetamine – it’s parent compound.
In the brain, ‘Phen’ stimulates the release of norepinephrine (noradrenaline) primarily, and dopamine and serotonin as a secondary effect.
The main effect on obesity is the reduction of the perception of hunger level. This allows the user to comply more strictly to a calorie controlled diet.
Norepinephrine and epinephrine (adrenaline) are also released in the body when Phentermine is taken. This forces cells to break down stored fat.
Topiramate is an anti-convulsive drug which has an additive effect when combined with Phentermine in combatting obesity.
There are many conditions this drug has been used to treat, however, it has only been approved for use alongside Phentermine since 2012.
Side Effects and Safety
Phentermine and Topiramate can cause a wide range of negative side effects individually. Combined, they have even greater potential for harm if used incorrectly.
Doctors generally only prescribe drugs like this if the risks associated with the patient’s obesity is of greater concern than the side effects.
Adverse effects include, but are not limited to:
- Cardiovascular / Heart Problems; tachycardia, palpitations, high blood pressure, greater risk of heart attack, stroke etc.
- Central Nervous System effects; dizziness, over-stimulation, headaches, insomnia, nervousness etc.
- Gastrointestinal effects; nausea, cramps, constipation, diarrhea etc.
Other effects; sexual dysfunction, problems passing urine etc.
Topiramate specifically can:
- Impair Heat Regulation
- Cause Suicidal Thoughts or Actions
- Cause Deformities in unborn Children
- Impair Vision
Due to the above side effects and the potential for many more, there is understandably a restriction on who can use Qsymia.
People fitting the following criteria should not, and will not be prescribed Qsymia:
- Pregnant / Breastfeeding Women
- Anyone currently taking Prescription Medication which Contraindicates Phentermine and/or
- Topiramate (ask your doctor)
- People with medical conditions, including High Blood Pressure, Heart conditions etc.
- People prone to stroke, heart problems due to genetic history
If you are clinically obese, by all means we recommend you seek advise from your Doctor.
You must be aware of the risks of using prescribed weight loss medication though, and Doctors are sometimes more invested in the drug than you may think.
We know that there are plenty of supplement weight loss products which are extremely effective and DO NOT come with a list of side effects as long as your arm.
We have tested and reviewed many of these commercially available diet pills and have summarized the best ones that are currently available.
What’s even better is that these fat burners and diet pills are available to anyone, worldwide. It can be said that together with a healthy diet and exercise schedule, they are as effective as any prescription diet pill.